How are property taxes assessed?

Before Proposition 2 1/2 went into effect in Massachusetts in Fiscal Year 1982, the amount to be raised by the property tax in each community was essentially determined by what the community decided to spend in the coming year, either through its Annual Town Meeting, or its City and Town Council. So, budgets were determined and, then, the tax rates were set to raise that amount. With Proposition 2 1/2 in effect, the process is reversed. The tax limitation law sets the maximum amount a community may collect, or levy, from the property tax to "...2.5% of the total full and fair cash value of all real and personal property in the community." Budgets must be made to fit within that limit (with the exception of any override(s) passed by the voters). At the Town Meeting, a budget is adopted. The budget total less the monies anticipated from other sources, such as state aid and local receipts from fees, etc., is the amount that needs to be raised through property taxes.

Show All Answers

1. How the Assessors Determine Value
2. Why assessments go up when a property hasn’t changed?
3. What if you disagree with the assessed value of your property?
4. What about abatements and appeals?
5. How are property taxes assessed?
6. How do you determine the tax rate?
7. What don't assessors do?